DEBRA MONTGOMERY FINE METAL SCULPTURE

DEBRA MONTGOMERY FINE METAL SCULPTURE
Steel Manzanita Tree

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Chasing / Repousse Starter "Kit"

SALE ON TOOLS!

Taking Orders-  am offering a 25% discounted package deal on a Chasing / Repousse "Starter" Tool Kit.

Kit includes:

(1) 8" cast iron pitch bowl with rubber ring
(1) 4 oz. basic chasing hammer
(5) lbs of my medium grade chasers pitch
(1) "Beginning Repousse Techniques..." instructional book
(2) 6" x 6" pcs of 24 oz. copper

COST:  $105.00 plus $13.95 shipping (within USA only - Canada orders email me for shipping quote)  

Go to my A Copper Rose Metal Art website Online Store to order.

Allow 4 weeks for delivery.

Custom forged tool set is sold separately.  See online store for details.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Chasers Pitch - Pine Rosin Based Medium Hard Pitch for Chasing / Repousse Work

I am now offering a nice pine rosin based "Chasers" pitch through "Pitch It To You" - Chasing / Repousse Pitch - A Division of A Copper Rose Metal Art.   Go to Pitch It To You website to order!

Particulars as follows:

FYI:

It takes at least 2.5 lbs of pitch to fill up a 4" pitch bowl.
It takes at least 5 lbs of pitch to fill up an 8" pitch bowl.

I am passing on my commercial flat rate shipping prices to you.
($10.20 versus $10.70)

Shipping costs have been determined based on the fact that most orders will be for 2.5 lbs and up.

Any orders less than 2.5 lbs, please contact me.

So having clarified that: prices are as follows:

  • Up to 5 lbs @ $9.00/lb plus $10.20 shipping flat rate box - After I receive your payment, allow 5 days processing for orders 5 lbs and under.
  • 6-15 lbs @8.75/lb plus $10.20 shipping flat rate box- After I receive your payment, allow 7 days processing for orders 6-15 lbs.
  • Orders over 15 lbs @$8.70/lb - call for shipping quote and turnaround time.
I apologize for any inconvenience, but currently, I cannot process orders from Canada/Mexico or any other international country through my standard shopping carts

Orders from Canada/Mexico or other international countries, please send me your order requests via email and I will send you an invoice with the correct shipping prices.  With this invoice, you will be able to pay with check or through Paypal. 

Canada/Mexico - up to 15 lbs of pitch - Flat Rate Shipping $25.60
Other International Countries - up to 15 lbs of pitch - Flat Rate Shipping is $41.28


Thanks for your interest!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Stand By Your Product/Art

SCENARIO:   Can you just "tone down" your work and leave off some of the details?"  Wow!

The other day, I was speaking with a potential client regarding a fairly large copper repousse piece they were considering.  To represent my capabilities, I brought along my current portfolio in order to show them some of the larger scale work I had completed in the past.  I went over everything in detail, including the technique, as well as touching on the hours each piece or section took to complete.  The response was "Wow, that sounds expensive."  This further resulted in a conversation about other artists they had spoken too with regard to some other big projects in this new home they were building.  The gist of the conversation was that while they wanted something nice, it didn't appear that they were willing to pay what they might anticipate the final fee to be.  Their solution to that was to suggest that the artists "tone down" the quality - not do as detailed of a job that they normally do because they were thinking "cheap."   Yes, they actually used the word "cheap" many times during this conversation.  

My response to her was that my prices were fair given the quality of work but that I would not be able to give her a ball park price until I had time to better evaluate the scope of the project. (At this point, the details were was just a brief conversation).  Obviously, if this person calls to more seriously discuss this particular commission, I have no intention of "toning down" the normal quality of my work to cheapen the project for them. 

I can't believe someone would even suggest that.  Its insulting!  I think that my portfolio represents a certain quality of work and is representative of many careful hours put into each piece.  What makes it is the details!  It is hard to get your name out there in the art world.  I always thought that one should put 100 percent into each piece and make it as perfect as possible, taking as many required hours as necessary to do just that.  I don't think that they would ask the carpenters building their house to "tone down" the quality of their carpentry.  Why do they think that it would be appropriate to suggest that to someone they approach on making a large wall hanging that will be the focal point of their living room?  My guess is that they may have contacted the artist who did a similar piece (the work was featured in a high end log home magazine) and that his price was more than they could afford so they think that a hungry local artist would be easier to persuade?  I am just speculating here, of course.  Uh- No.

First, all of the artists out there, like any other small business - in order to be truly competitive, you need to set your prices that are comparable with your competition within the scope of the quality of the work that is produced in that category.  You should take the mind set that first, as in any business, you ARE allowed to make a profit.  That is not an unreasonable expectation. Second, there is the cost of the actual hours and material put into the piece and after that, there should be an "asthetic" value for your work.  

Obviously as you gain skill,  popularity and notoriety within the art community, collectors, etc., your "asthetic" worth may rise, but to start -  maybe do some research and see what is going on in your specialty.  You can likely come up with a reasonable asthetic value for your work by seeing what current selling prices are for similar pieces.  Its a place to start anyway. 

I have learned from being in small business in fields other than art, you don't do yourself or anyone else any good by undercutting the industry norms when it comes to pricing.  Typically the people who do that are not the best in the business and are just trying to drum up work.  What happens is that they get in over their head and end up ultimately blowing the job anyway, but in the process, have potentially brought the price down for everyone and created a negative association with the industry. 

An example of this in our metal fabrication world was we were called out to bid a copper job.  We were referred to these people only for the copper work.  There was another blacksmith on site working on the iron railings on this house.  The home owner expressed some frustration with this person because they were taking way to long and wanted to know if we did railings.  We told them we did, but that we knew this other shop and were not interested in coming in on their job.  So, we bid the copper part.  Turns out later, this shop found out that we were bidding the copper, and even though they had NO experience with copper whatsoever, (as a matter of fact, they were referring copper work to us earlier in the years) - they  undercut our price by $1,000, which resulted in us losing that job.  Later we found out they were not able to figure out how to do the copper work required, ultimately failed and could not produce the copper like they said they could.  And.....they ultimately got kicked off the job completely because they never got the iron work finished.   So not only did they screw it up for themselves, they screwed it up for everyone involved.  We all lost.   Neither of us got the copper or the iron.   This is an example of what happens when you undercut your market.  And we have never heard from that contractor again!   Thanks guys! 

Lowering your prices to accommodate a cheapskate customer or contractor doesn't help you any more than "toning down" the quality of your work in order to "make it cheaper" in the eyes of these types of customers. 

Well, I got off track a little bit - but my point is  - do your homework.  Make sure you have a justifiable price on your art work.  After that, stand by your price and stand by the quality of your work that will back up that price.  If a customer says they can go to Joe Schmoe to get it cheaper, let 'em go!  My guess is that it will turn out quite like the story I mentioned above.  There is a reason why they are so cheap. And personally, I do not have a problem mentioning that to the customer either. 

Bring your portfolio of your work and qualifications, get all the information you need to accurately bid the job and bid it like the professional that you are.   After that, stand by your price and the quality of your work.  If they don't want to work with you on those terms, they you are better off moving on. 

All this time spent building your portfolio and reputation based on your hard work, developing a reputation and signature style can quickly be unraveled if you start decreasing the quality to accommodate a cheapskate. 

If we all work together, rather than against each other - it will help keep the whole industry strong!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Website Changes Coming

I am in the process of changing website service providers.  My basic website address - http://acopperrose.com/ will remain the same, but some of the page links out there in internet land may prove to be broken.

If you book mark the main home page address, http://acopperrose.com/ that will still get you to my site. 

As of 5:51 pm pacific time 8/04/2010, the old website is still coming up.  It is supposed to change anywhere from 24-48 hours. 

My email address:  info@acopperrose.com will also remain the same.  This is already working in the new website format.

Thanks for following my website/work!

Have a good one! 

Monday, June 7, 2010

Other Repousse Projects of Note

A second example of monumental Copper Repousse sculpture is Portlandia by Raymond Kaskey, which was installed in 1985 in downtown Portland, Oregon.  This sculpture is said to be the second largest Copper Repousse sculpture in the United States.  Again, in the close up image below,  you can see what appear to be seams in the construction of this sculpture. 




Another example, one from antiquity, is the late Eighteenth Dynasty mummy mask of the King Tutankhamun.  The Lapis Lazuli and other stones were inlaid in chased areas after the height of the form was completed.  The majority of the mask was formed using the technique of Repousse using what appears to be a single sheet of gold. Though the ceremonial beard, Nekhbet Vulture and Uraeus were attached separately.


Metalworking Trivia - The Statue of Liberty - Largest Copper Repousse Statue in the United States

The Statue of Liberty is considered to be the largest Copper Repousse sculpture in the United States. If you look closely at the photo, you can see the seams in the copper pieces.


The Statue of Liberty was a gift from the French, intended to celebrate the centenary of the American Revolution, though it was not completed until June 1884.  Construction began in France in1875, was completed in June 1884, pieces shipped to the United States in 1885 and was officially dedicated October 28, 1886.

The artist who designed this sculpture Frederick-Auguste Bartholdi received a patent on his design in 1879 and it is said that small replicas of the statue were sold, which helped raise funding for the project.

The statue's framework was designed and executed by none other than Gustave Eiffel, who later designed and constructed the famous Eiffel Tower.

Some stats are:  Height is 151 feet.  Weight of copper used is 200,000 pounds.  Thickness of copper sheet used is 3/32" (approximately 1/32" thicker than 48 oz. copper sheet).  More than 300 sheets of copper used.

These sheets were individually hand-hammered or pressed into shape using various wooden molds, hence the repousse process.  Interestingly, each panel/sheet was backed by an iron strap for rigidity.  Each of these straps were fastened to the supporting framework in a way that each section is supported independently of the other with no panel hanging from another or bearing down on another.

In 1985, the Statue underwent a major restoration with the 1,350 pieces of the original iron frame being replaced with stainless steel due to severe corrosion problems.

Some more interesting facts:  Liberty's torch had been plagued with leaks ever since it was modified in 1916 to install internal lighting. Gutzon Borglum, the sculptor of Mount Rushmore, had cut out most of the copper from the flame and installed 250 tinted yellow glass panes. The torch was deemed beyond repair and was hoisted off the statue on July 4, 1984. A team of ten French metalworkers constructed a new torch on Liberty Island using the same techniques and tools as Bartholdi. Old photos and measurements taken from the original were used as a reference so the new torch would remain consistent the original design, except that the copper flame was plated in 24 carat gold leaf (in 1893 Bartholdi had suggested gilding the statue when he was disappointed by its lighting). The new torch was raised into place on November 25, 1985 and the original torch was placed on display for visitors in the lobby of the museum in the pedestal.

Here is a link that gives more information on the history and restoration if you are interested:

ASCE MET - History/Restoration Statue of Liberty

Thursday, May 13, 2010

California Sculptors Symposium - Sept 21 - 26, 2010 - REPOUSSE CLASS CANCELLED

Below is the link to the Registration Form for the Symposium

UPDATE:  09/10/2010
Unfortunately, due to lack of registrants for this particular workshop - it was mutually decided to cancel the "Introduction to Copper Repousse and its Applications in Sculpture" workshops. 


I will, however, be putting together some repousse class schedules after the new year so will keep you posted.


CHANGE IN WORKSHOP TIMES as of 06/25/2010:  My workshop times have changed to the following:



CANCELLED  - Wed, Sept 22 - 10:30am-12:00 noon / 1:30 pm-3:00 pm

CANCELLED -  Thurs, Sept 23 - 10:30 am-12:00 noon


I believe due to the short time blocks available here, I will expect that my workshops will end up being more of an ongoing rotation throughout the day for those who want to try hands-on work.  Hope to see some of you there!  


If you would like more information/brochure on the Symposium, please email me at  info@acopperrose.com  with your mailing address/contact information.

For updates on CSS:







Wednesday, April 28, 2010

September California Sculptors Symposium

Okay, so the latest word on the September symposium is that the majority did not want to make a permanent switch to the September dates. So that means that there will still be the annual April event.

However, the last word I got from Victor is that they are still planning a "Focus on Sculpture" event for September anyway. I do not know for sure if I am going to be part of that event or not.

Nothing is set in stone yet, but I will keep you posted via my website and blog as soon as I hear anything new.

Feel free to go to their websitefor information as well.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

E Book is Ready

My book is ready for purchase.  The download PDF version should be up and running this evening.  I also am selling hard copies of the book, which I can simply mail to you.  I accept check or you can pay on line via PayPal.  You don't need a PayPal account to pay through them.

The price of the e-book will be $15.00 (plus tax for California residents)
The price of the hard copy will be $20.00 plus shipping (plus tax for California residents)

Click here to go directly to my store to purchase.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

NOW SELLING REPOUSSE TOOLS

I am now offering some basic beginning repousse tools for sale on my website.  I am also in the process of developing a "logo" for some apparel I hope to offer by the end of April - T-shirts and Tank Tops to start, Sweatshirts in the Fall.  I have commissioned a terrific local artist, Joshua Wigger, to design the logo - I am expecting the designs to be fun, a little edgy and unique! I will keep you posted!

For the tools currently available, click on the link below to go directly to my online store: 

A Copper Rose Metal Art - Online Store

Friday, February 26, 2010

California Sculptors Symposium

I just got confirmation of my invitation to be an instructor/demonstrator during the September 2010 California Sculptors Symposium located in the wonderful coastal city of Cambria, CA., at Camp Ocean Pines!  
This is exciting - I had approached them about this at last April's symposium!

My tentative dates (pending confirmation of the other instructors) will be Wed./September 22, Thurs./ September 23 and Fri./September 24.  The plan is that I will be leading two hands on workshops per day, two hours each.  I will be providing all the materials necessary and you will go home with a piece that you complete.  

I will also have some items for sale, such as my upcoming book, tools, etc. I am also currently working on designing a logo for some apparel.

I will keep you updated to the final details as I know them!  

In the meantime, there will be the April Symposium going on April 18th through April 25, 2010.  Please go to their website for more information regarding attending this event! California Sculptors Symposium

Ironstone Vineyards "Spring Obsession" Art Show & Wine Celebration 2010

See my work "A MAPLE LEAF STUDY"  on display in the Ironstone Vineyards "Spring Obsession"  Juried Art Show and Wine Celebration



Address:  1894 Six Mile Road, Murphys, CA  95247
  •  Show opens Saturday:  10am - 6pm   
  • Artist's Reception 4pm-6pm 
  • Show closes Sunday May 2, 2010 5pm 
          
There will be other activities going on during the month of March at the winery.  

Go to their website Ironstone Vinyards to get more information.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Enhancing Your Website For More Exposure

01/02/2010

I came across this article and it has some very helpful, legitimate and free information regarding website enhancement. I have been working on my site and already have some of these things in place on my website and it has, in fact, increased traffic to my site.

Just click on the link below to the PDF file. Hope you find something useful!

Click here to view the full article on Website Enhancements.

Artful Business - POSITION YOUR BUSINESS FOR SUCCESS..... (article from Sculptural Pursuit Mag.)

Hi to all you fellow artists/business owners -

I read this article in the Winter 2009 issue of Sculptural Pursuit magazine. It's really just common sense, but I thought I would share.

Here's to a successful and creative 2010 for everyone!

Excerpt:


"For the past year, we've been inundated with one distressing piece of economic news after another, along with anecdotal reports from art fairs and shows around the country indicating that sales are undergoing a major downturn. I was surprised and gratified to see so many sculptors actually selling work at the recent Loveland shows. Many of the artists with whom I talked had sold at least a few pieces, and some had made significant dents in their show inventory...

.....One of the positives that comes out of times like these is that your business can become much leaner, yet stay successful, so that when times change - because they always do - you're ready to go with new work, new habits and a new attitude."

Click here to view the full article on Artful Business.